BIRMINGHAM, Ala. — Ever the showman, Helio Castroneves isn't disappointing this weekend with a special paint scheme from sponsor AAA.
Castroneves' car for Sunday's race at Barber features branding for the upcoming IndyCar-themed animated movie "Turbo," which sponsor AAA permitted in part to help raise awareness of the dangers of texting and driving. Castroneves has made sure to push both at every opportunity.
He started Friday during his news conference as the fastest driver of the day.
"I don't know if you guys know it, but AAA and "Turbo" are teaming up together, which I have to say will probably help a little bit out there," he opened. "It is great to talk about it so people, when they go out there, to not text and drive and don't talk on the phone. Don't forget to watch it July 17. That is the premier of the movie. I want to make sure you watch it because it is going to be a lot of fun. Be safe when you drive."
And then he took his first breath.
The energetic Brazilian was still on message Saturday after qualifying when he was asked about his sixth-place effort.
"Well, what a great opportunity for AAA and Turbo, by the way, the movie coming out ... want to make sure everybody remembers that," Castroneves began.
He was then interrupted by rookie Tristan Vautier, who was about to sit through the speech for the second time in as many days and sees the signage from his stall on pit lane behind Castroneves.
"I see that in the pit lane all the time because I'm behind you, so please talk about it at another time."
But Castroneves would not be deterred, reminding the crowd of the movie's opening date.
"By the way, don't text and drive," he added.